A 23-year old footballer, Karishma Ali, is winning praise for the exemplary social work she has been doing in her hometown in Chitral Valley. The COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown had badly affected the lives of the people in the area.

Ali is the first girl from her area to have played football at a national and international level. Last year she was also listed among Forbes’ ’30 Under 30′ in Asia, along with the tennis star Naomi Osaka and K-pop band Black pink.

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The government can do only so much and in times like these, we need to step up and slow the spread of this virus. Whether it’s through videos, posters or convincing the people we know to stay home or take precautionary measures. We all need to do our part; take responsibility not just for our lives but for others around us. My friend @abihahaiderofficial and I decided to start an awareness campaign through posters and banners. We met different people who had different opinions about corona. However, most of them were unaware of what was happening in our country and around the world. We read the posters out loud for that people that couldn’t read and then there were those who said “ham toh eman walay hain, hamen kuch nahi hoga.” Some shopkeepers complained about not finding masks in stores and were asking for masks. This is f-7, g-6 and g-9 markaz That I am talking about. My friend and I did whatever we could do in our capacity. Please donate masks and sanitizers if you can. To all the school and university students, since you have off and if you aren’t working, please stay home. Let’s be cautious and kind of our surroundings. To all the vloggers and bloggers, keep uploading more videos for awareness and make sure you speak in your local language so that more people understand. #SpreadAwareness #Corona #togetherwestrong @govt_of_pakistan @kamyabjawanpk @nichelifestyle @unicefpk @unicef

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After being admired for her football talent, Ali has been profiled by CNN for her selfless philanthropy work in her area.


According to the report, when the COVID-19 pandemic handicapped the lives of many, Ali would spend hours driving on bouncy, mountainous roads with her father and uncle distributing essential supplies to the local hospital and underprivileged villagers. She raised money via social media to buy those items.

“As of August, they had supplied one month’s worth of rations to 300 families and donated 155 N95 masks, 53 goggles, 250 PPE suits, 650 surgical masks, 400 pairs of surgical gloves and 76 face shields to the DHQ Hospital Chitral,” the report stated.

Ali, while discussing how things changed in her area when the lockdown was imposed, said: “The men work as daily wage laborers in different cities in Pakistan and what happened after the lockdown, many industries and businesses shut down, they had to return home, and people were finding it difficult, a lot of families were in need.”

The footballer hopes to empower women through education and skills. Sharing her dreams and futures plans, Ali said, “Ten years from now I want to see at least 10-20 more girls like myself who come back here [Chitral] after they’ve achieved their dream and work for the other girls that I was not able to reach out to and, slowly, I see a progressive society where men and women are working equally, where women do not have to stress about traditional customs and be able to freely do what they can and see that I was part of all of this change.”

“I want to see more women in leadership positions and then sit back and enjoy. This is what I wanted to fight for,” she added.

Ali has represented Pakistan at the Jubilee Games in Dubai. Her team was the first women’s team from Pakistan to participate in the AFL International Cup. Ali is also the founder of the Chitral Women’s Sports Club.